SOURCE: Lampard Confirmed to Return for NYCFC PreseasonSource tells columnist Nick Chavez that Lampard will not extend loan with Manchester city and that Xavi was very close to signing with the club
by Nick Chavez | Tuesday, November 18, 2014
A source close to Manchester City FC has exclusively confirmed New York City FC's Sporting Director Claudio Reyna’s declaration that Frank Lampard will indeed be joining New York City FC in time for the pre-season.
Reyna told the press during the NYCFC home jersey unveiling on Thursday regarding Lampard, "Do we have a drop-dead date? No, we don't, [but] the plan is Frank will be in preseason with New York City FC."
My source has confirmed that Reyna’s statement indeed coincides with Manchester City’s plans, and that Lampard staying for the rest of the English Premier League season is not a consideration for Manchester City, as City Football Group places great importance in the establishment and success of New York City FC and knows the club's Designated Players must be with the team to prepare for the beginning of the season.
But, like Reyna, my source didn’t provide an exact date when Lampard is set to re-join New York City FC.
Doubt was raised in recent reports, with rumors that Manchester City would want to extend Frank Lampard’s loan spell with the English Champions into the first months of NYCFC's first ever preseason training camp.
Some reports even suggested that City might choose to keep Lampard till the end of the EPL season, if he was needed by coach Manuel Pellegrini.
But, my source confirmed my suspicions that to keep Lampard from joining NYCFC to train with his new team in the pre-season (or worse, past the regular season kick off) would be viewed as detrimental to the MLS expansion club, and that Manchester City would simply sign another player to fill the role of the exiting Lampard, or look to its highly-rated academy if necessary, before putting NYCFC in a difficult and potentially scandalous position.
Interestingly, my source also claims that NYCFC was extremely close to signing Xavi Hernandez of FC Barcelona, and CFG felt he was very close to agreeing to terms, but for unspecified reasons, the deal fell through.
With rumors today saying that Xavi will be the manager of FC Barcelona if very successful former club President Joan Laporta wins re-election in 2016, perhaps Xavi has his sights set at beginning a managerial career with the Catalan giants rather than continuing his playing career at Major League Soccer.